People may be pure in their own eyes, but the Lord examines their motives.
~Proverbs 16:2, NLT
You are loved for Christ sake, not because your heart and life are perfect.
It takes a while for the gospel of grace to sink in to the human spirit. I was saved from hell at age nine but I had no understanding of grace. I knew I was a sinner and needed forgiveness and that Christ alone could forgive my sins but I had no idea of the depths of my depravity. I was clueless when it came to my depraved and wretched condition. After graduating Seminary and moving to Cherokee, Alabama, the LORD began opening my eyes. I came out of seminary wanting to be a soul winner and a great preacher but all for the wrong reasons. Yet at the time, I thought my motives were noble and pure. The LORD put me in the wilderness to teach me otherwise. It was at Cherokee that I came to realize that I was a death and hell deserving sinner. Anything and everything above hell was grace for hell is where I deserved to be. None of my motives were pure and I did not want to be a great preach for Jesus sake; it was all for Jack.
A big part of sanctification is the LORD turning us inside out and showing us what is beneath the surface. I came to realize that every imagination and every aspiration was vain. I learned the hard way that my heart could not be trusted. I realized that the only thing I could trust was the word of God and the gospel of grace. You don’t know yourself unless you realize that your motives are never pure. You must understand that the LORD is the only One qualified to examine our motives.
There are two verse you need to know: 1 Corinthians 4:4, “My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent.” Paul make this confession. Your clear conscience does not mean a thing. Jonah had a clear conscience; he went down beneath the deck of the ship and was sleeping through a typhoon. The other verse is 1 John 3:20, “If our hearts condemn us…God is greater than our hearts.” Bottom line: you cannot trust your heart-it is deceitful and it will trip you up. Most of us are prone to one or the other. My conscience is never clear so the second verse is the one that I rely on. We must arrive at a point where we understand that we are saved by sheer grace alone. This will do two things: humble us and make us thankful. Gratitude and grace go together. Ungrateful people never understand grace. They live on a point system and they grade on the curve. It is a people pleasing performance pit that must be avoided.
I’ve been posting some of the blogs from my I-pad in the house and that is why there is no extra: I have not figured out how to download the graphics. Jason will have to give me another tutorial.
Another great day of sunshine PTL; about 10 of these in a row would be great: can’t cut the ditches but I did get my garden bush hogged without miring down. New mandate from Governor telling us no church on April 12; she is saying April 19 now but that will probably change. We had already scratched our egg hunt and now we will have to scratch Easter services as well. Josh and I are working on parking lot church: everyone would remain in their cars. I will preach outside. I already have some praise in mind: honk if you can hear me, honk if you love Jesus. I am getting excited just thinking about it. Josh, Dale and I can be on stage and everyone else in their vehicles.
Markham wants me to do a daily broadcast on FACEBOOK. At first, I thought NO WAY but after thinking about it; I may give it a shot. I could do my blog live. I am guessing that these presentations would be 5-8 minutes. It will not involve any extra study, just the time to put it online. My biggest concern is getting use to the camera. So far, all our presentations have been awkward.